Can a translator accompany the applicant for inspection?
The appellant had inherited some land from his late father vide Jamabandi for the year 1897-98. He filed an application under the Right to Information (RTI) Act with the Department of Revenue (DoR) seeking to know whether any such land has been left un-acquired by any awardee till date; whether any compensation has been paid to the acquired land or whether the same is laying pending payment to legal heirs etc. He also sought the names and addresses of people to whom the acquired land has been released along with photocopies of documents. The First Appellate Authority (FAA) stated that the information would be available in the Central Record Room, Tiz Hasari and directed the PIO to transfer the RTI application to Tehsildar (HQ) Central Record Room.
During the hearing the before Central Information Commission (CIC), the respondent submitted that after searching in the godown they were able to retrieve some records related to the information being sought by the applicant. The respondent produced some papers which were more than 100 years old and torn and were in Urdu language. The respondent also stated that they had put together the torn papers and photocopied them. They agreed to hand over the copies to the appellant.
View of CIC
Taking note of the fact that the records sought by the appellant are almost 100 years old, the Commission directed that the appellant should be allowed to visit the PIO’s office along with an Urdu translator and inspect all the records pertaining to the Jamabandi so that the Urdu translator can help identify the documents required by the appellant. The CIC ruled that photocopies of 100 pages of the documents identified by the Appellant may be provided to the Appellant free of cost and remaining pages charged at Rs 2/- per page.
Citation: Mr. Ashwani Kumar Rohtagi v. Department of Revenue in File No: CIC/AD/A/2013/000761
RTI Citation : RTIFI/2013/CIC/1243
Click here to view original RTI order of Court / Information Commission